Is he gone?
OK, here we go. Remember how ugly the floor in my bathroom looked? Well, here's how it looks now!
Ta Da! I painted 12" black and white "faux" tiles on it! I LOVE it! For $15, I have a totally new bathroom floor, and it only took 7,000 coats of paint! Only kidding, sort of.
I'll give a brief how-to, for anyone interested in making over their own linoleum floor.
The first step is to clean the floor. I used Shower Power, which is my favorite cleaner EVER. That stuff is powerful! Spray it on, let it sit five minutes or so, then wipe off. No need to rinse. And it smells pepperminty. Yum.
Once your floor is dry, you can prime it. I highly recommend Zinsser 123. It's a bonding primer, made especially for slick surfaces (we used it to prime the paneling in our living room). It is a little stinky, so make sure and have an open window.
I cut in around the perimeter first with a brush, taping off around the toilet, tub, cabinets and walls. Then I used a low-nap, 4" roller (I experimented with different ones, and this worked the best for getting behind the toilet, etc.) to roll on the first coat. You will be able to see the old flooring through the first coat. Let it dry (only takes about an hour) and continue to apply coats until it's opaque. I applied three. I only cut in for the first coat. It only took about 10 minutes to roll on each subsequent coat.
Now it's ready for your base color. I used Dutch Boy "Baby's Tooth" in semi-gloss (same as the walls). It's a standard interior, water-base paint. I let this coat dry overnight.
You can stop here, and have a beautiful, sparkling clean white floor, or....
You can totally go crazy and opt for a black and white checkboard pattern, like I did. Be prepared for this to take some time. Lots of time.
But so worth it!
OK, here we go:
You'll need a roll of blue painter's tape, 12x12 and 10x12 sheets of cardstock, a quart of black floor paint and lots of patience!
Starting in a corner, tape 12" out from the wall to the opposite wall. I used the sheet of 12x12 cardstock as a spacer, moving it and taping in one long, continuous strip.
NOTE: If your linoleum has texture, like mine, press that tape down hard. Now press it harder. And again. Do you have a blister yet? Then you haven't pressed hard enough. OK... I'll let you in on a little secret. If you want to bypass the whole throbbing, bulbous white blister nonsense, use a dry cloth to smooth down your tape. Or if you have an ink brayer? Even better. It only took me 2 days to figure that out. I'll spare you the gorey details.
Your next strip will be parallel to the first, but spaced 10" this time. Continue parallel strips, alternating 10" and 12" each time, until you reach your stopping point.
Starting in the same first corner, begin taping perpendicular, alternating 12" and 10" spacing. Once you're done, this is what it'll look like:
Now you can start painting black squares! I started with the first square I taped off, using a 3" low-nap roller (Rubbermaid brand is very nice). Go light with the first coat. Floor paint is thinner than regular paint, and it'll seep under that tape if you apply it too heavily.
Once that's semi-dry (about 1/2 hour), apply a slightly heavier second coat. Give it about 15 minutes to set up, then remove all the tape. (It's really important to take the tape off while the paint is still wet, to prevent pulling off dry paint)
Let the first set of squares dry overnight, since in the next step, you'll be taping over part of your freshly painted black squares.
Now you can tape off the second set of squares on those rows you skipped the first time around. (I forgot to get a picture of them taped off before I painted, but you can see from the next picture that they're taped individually.)
Then, voila! A brand new, sparkly clean, almost perfectly painted floor! You will have some touch-up to do. Don't sweat it.
Edited: OK, after saving this post as a draft for a couple days, and sitting down this morning to finish it up, I realized that the smarter thing to do would be to paint the BLACK as your base coat, and fill in with WHITE squares, since that paint is a little thicker and would less likely to bleed. Live and learn. :)
I love my "new" floor!
If you have any questions, don't hesitate to leave a comment or email me. I'd be happy to help!